Membrane Center Looks to Add Penn State Location

Academic and industry leaders in membrane science, engineering and technology gathered earlier this year to review the latest research and plan for the expansion of an Arkansas-led national research group.

The Membrane Science, Engineering and Technology Center, known as MAST, is directed by Ranil Wikramasinghe, professor of chemical engineering at the University of Arkansas. It produces fundamental and applied research in energy production, water treatment, pharmaceutical purification and chemical processing.

The research center has three sites: one in Fayetteville at the Cato Springs Research Center, one at the University of Colorado-Boulder and one at the New Jersey Institute of Technology. Now, MAST leaders are looking to add a fourth site at Penn State University.

Wickramansinghe said the move would enhance MAST's research capabilities.

"Adding Penn State to the research group will allow for a greater focus on the application of membranes in biopharmaceuticals, and for sustainability," he said. "Their research will address key fundamental issues that limit the use of membranes in those areas."

Leaders from the three existing sites and Penn State gathered in April at Penn State for a planning meeting to prepare the school's submission to the National Science Foundation to officially join the research group.

"This is an exciting time for MAST," Wickramansinghe said. "As we continue to see success in our applied and fundamental research, we're in a great position to grow and push for even more progress in these areas."

Faculty and students from all three current MAST Center sites attended the meeting in April, and graduate students presented the results of their research over the last six months through oral and poster presentations. Students and faculty also had a chance to meet with the center's industrial sponsors at the meeting, organizers said.

Wickramasinghe chaired the Industrial Advisory Board meeting, while Andrew Zydney of Penn State chaired the planning meeting. NSF program director Prakash Balan was on hand for both the IAB and planning meetings.

The University of Arkansas site of the MAST Center has nine projects across the departments of biomedical, chemical, and mechanical engineering.

For more information on the MAST center please visit www.mastcenter.org or contact the center coordinator, Amber Friday-Brown, at eafriday@uark.edu.

Contacts

Amber Friday-Brown, coordinator, MAST Center
College of Engineering-Cato Springs Research Center
479-575-4969, eafriday@uark.edu

Nick DeMoss, director of communications
College of Engineering
479-575-5697, ndemoss@uark.edu

Headlines

'Interpreting Kigali, Rwanda' Wins Award From Design Research Group

The book Interpreting Kigali, Rwanda was published by the University of Arkansas Press in collaboration with the Fay Jones School of Architecture and Design.

Projects Led by Fay Jones School Faculty Selected for New York Events in May and Into Summer

Visiting professor Cory Olsen’s interior design class and two faculty members — Jessica Colangelo and Charles Sharpless — will have projects on display in New York.

Fifth Annual Play Therapy Conference to Feature Keynote Speaker Bonnie Badenoch

The keynote speaker for the Play Therapy Conference will speak about the play can help heal trauma. The conference will be June 21-22.

Human Development and Family Sciences Students Help Parents Interact With Their Children

U of A students from the School of Human Environmental Sciences recently connected with families in Fayetteville Public Schools to help parents better interact with their children.

Board of Trustees Approves Changes to U of A Tuition and Fees

A 2.5% increase in tuition will go into effect for the fall 2019 semester.

Newswire Daily